Games for smartphones have developed a lot in recent years. While the eye-catching shooters like Shadowgun were the exception a few years ago, there are now many beautiful mobile games that also offer good depth of play. As a result, some smartphone manufacturers have devices in their portfolio that are explicitly addressed to gamers – one of them is the Chinese company Nubia with the Red Magic line. The new Red Magic 3 is due to its 90 Hz display, active cooling, fast processor and game menu offer playback advantages.
We examined Red Magic 3 more closely in the review and checked if there are real benefits for gamers compared to other high-end smartphones. We found that the device is a top smartphone at a relatively low price, regardless of the target group orientation – if one accepts the unique camera and the slightly side view for the average Joe.
In terms of gaming hardware, the Red Magic 3 has elegant decorative elements: the back features four red triangles and the slightly conical bottom and top. Even the fingerprint sensor – Nubia installed classic on the back, not under the screen glass – is not round or rectangular but hexagonal. The feature does not degrade this, but it looks a bit bold compared to other smartphone designs. Incidentally, Nubia did not change much in design compared to its predecessor Red Magic Mars.
Also, the back of an LED strip is installed, which can withstand 16 million colors. This is only enabled when notifications or when the game menu is enabled – more on it later. In settings you can choose between different colors and lighting effects. Users can also disable the movie completely.
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The front, however, looks compared to the back totally good and comes without decorative toys. The Red Magic 3 has a 6.65-inch screen, which is almost the same size as the Oneplus 7 Pro. However, since Nubia traditionally uses the front camera above the screen, the panel around the screen is wider in Red Magic 3. As a result, the smartphone is significantly larger than the Oneplus 7 Pro: Red Magic 3 is not for small pants pockets. Considering the size of the screen for a well fit screen, we find the extent, but it is warranted. Additionally, the image is not disturbed by a notch or hole on the screen.
The screen has a resolution of 2,340 x 1,080 pixels, on a higher resolution screen. Nubia was probably omitted for cost reasons. The OLED screen can display screen rates up to 90 Hz, which is only for Red Magic 3 games: We can only activate the game selection option, not generally for the whole system. The screen supports video playback on HDR, allowing us to watch Youtube videos with a higher dynamic range.
Nubia's Red Magic 3 has a 6.65-inch display. (Picture: Martin Wolf / Golem.de)
The edges of Red Magic 3 have some special features: In addition to the power switch and the volume switch, there are, for example, ventilation slots on the right end. The smartphone has a built-in fan that can be turned on in game mode. Depending on the setting, the fan can automatically switch on based on the chip temperature and provide cooling. Interestingly, Red Magic 3 with a maximum of 9.5 mm is not too thick. The edge of the smartphone is also slightly thinner. Let's take a look at what the built-in fan does in practice. Also on the right side there are two touch keys that can be used as shoulder buttons during playback.
There are seven pogo pins installed on the left side, which can be used to connect a docking station – unfortunately this is not for testing. In addition, there is a red switch at the top: This opens the already mentioned Game Center, a game-specific game that not only clearly lists the installed games but also offers various settings.